Lee Family Lights

Lee Family Lights We're Having A Very Merry Christmas in Lacey, WA

A Wonderful Winter Wonderland…

Author: Ken | Filed under: Misc Wednesday Dec 17,2008

So my wife woke me up this morning about 7:30am or so to have me come look at the snow.  It had been snowing for a few hours at this point and things were starting to get covered in a beautiful blanket of white snow.  Being true to who I am, I never made it back to bed, even though I could have slept in this morning if I chose to.

I just wanted to share a few picture with you of our decorations and how they look in the snow.  Will get a few more later when it gets darker.

The Lights Are Back On…

Author: Ken | Filed under: Lights Monday Dec 15,2008

So after what seemed like a drive that took forever to get home from Seattle because of the icy roads in the South Tacoma/North Ft. Lewis area, we made it home right baout 7pm.  First thing I did was opened scheduler, and hit ‘Play’.  Without even stepping into the yard, the music started and 18,000 or so of our lights sprang to life and began to dance glowing their beautiful lights upon a snowy white ground.

The yard itself is a mess.  I have heard, strangly enough from a really nice gentleman we met at a Wal-Mart in Tulsa, OK, that we had 70+ MPH winds in this area this past weekend.  By the looks of my yard, it don’t surprise me.  I have some blowups that are scattered, my skiing polar bear and a lighted snowman are laying on the ground after taking a nose dive.  Our cross fell (as it seems to do anytime there is a slightly more than mild gust of wind) and it appeared in the darness to have taken out one of our Angels, which sit at its base, as well.  The roof still isn’t working, so I will have to try to work on that, but it might be off for the season, sadly, because with the snow and ice up there, I am not gonna ask someone to do something that I wouldn’t do on my own, even if I could. Gonna try to work on the controller from the ground and see what I can get it to do, if I can, and go from there I guess.  1 of our 2 web cams are back online as well.  It’s the one that sits on my office window point outward, but that’s a start.

I have to work today until 4pm, then run some errands, so I will work on the yard when I get home and try to get it cleaned up and back to somewhat normal then.

Today is my brother Judd’s, birthday, so I would like to wish him a HAPPY BIRTHDAY and let him know that I love him very much and I hope he has a great one!~~

No Lights…

Author: Ken | Filed under: Uncategorized Sunday Dec 14,2008

We left home on Thursday morning to fly to Oklahoma to attend my Mom’s funeral.  I just found out a few hours ago that they had a pretty nasty wind storm blow through Lacey and that the bulk of our lights are not on.  I have noticed trying to connect to the web cam that its either not on or now it’s totally black.  After hearing about the wind storm, this made sense to me.  We were unable to connect when the power was out and now that it is back on it appears that the wind had blown the cam out of position, so it needs reset.  As for the lights, well, as we all know its run via a computer so when the power went out, the computer went off.  Thus with it resetting and with us in Oklahoma until Sunday, our lights wont be back on until Sunday night, the 14th, at the earliest.  When we get home we will assess the damage and see what we can do and see how soon we can get everything back on.

The show must go on, right?  With that said, as soon as I can get everything back up and running, there will be light.

Pray for us as we fly home today.  Sounds like we will have to deal with snow in Denver as well as Seattle!



Author: Ken | Filed under: Uncategorized Wednesday Dec 10,2008

I spent the weekend after Thanksgiving trying to get things ironed out just right with the lights and the controllers.  We are still having a few issues, but things arent as bad as they once were.  There are a few things I cant seem to get figured out with the controllers, issues we werent having last year, but are now.  Not sure if it’s the firmware for the controllers, the controllers themselves, the cat 5cables or what really, but there are a few little glitches.

It’s a catch 22 really.  People have been coming by via the car load and when they see me outside they tell me how much they love them, yet, I know its not right and they would be so much better, so what do I do?  Well, I am still working on them to make them better and hope I dont mess it all up 🙂

This past week, on December 2nd, my Mom passed away.  We have dedicated our light show to her. She didnt get to see the show for herself, outside anyhow.  She did watch it via the web cam on her computer with the radio turned on to hear the music.  The Saturday after Thanksgiving Mom and I watched the entire show on her computer and she absolutely loved it!!  I hooked up the web cam to share our lights with family, little did I know it would be Moms way to connect to them as well as she did, often, in the few days they were on before she passed away.  I loved my Mom very much and I am gonna miss her with every fiber of my being.  If you are reading this and don’t know us personally, I ask that you please come by and enjoy the lights as she did and if you can please make a donation, however big or small, to the American Lung Association.

Thanks again and MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

Having A Few Issues…

Author: Ken | Filed under: Lights Friday Nov 28,2008

After the glitches were fixed last night, things ran pretty smoothly. Then there was tonight! If it could go wrong, it did tonight! Earlier in the day I hung the Merry Christmas sign on the rock wall, finally, and apparently in doing so I broke a light or something so I lost part of the “R” in Christmas. With the help of my wife, we got that fixed pretty easily. I am still having power leak issues on controllers 4 & 8, with random light strings staying lit when they should be off. Gonna try to reflash the firmware tomorrow and see if that fixes it. I also noticed that last Thursday night the laptop I am running this show off of shut off. I know that it has an issue of getting too hot, but since I have it in the garage, where its been getting down to the low 30’s at night, I figured it would be cool enough… I guess I figured wrong. Not really sure if that’s why it did it or not, but it did it again tonight so I am gonna replace it with an old desk top unit I got and see how that goes.

Here’s to hoping for the best 🙂

The Lights Are On…

Author: Ken | Filed under: Lights Thursday Nov 27,2008

So we went live tonight at 5pm PST. We had a few glitches, a few little things to fix, but it seems to be running smoothly now. Heck, we had a car full of people come by at 4:30pm asking when the lights would be on. I let them know they would be on at 5pm and they said they would be back.

Let the season begin and lets enjoy the lights!

Say What!?!?!

Author: Ken | Filed under: Misc Wednesday Nov 26,2008

Are we really less than 19 1/2 hours from going “LIVE”!?!?  I think we are almost ready.  Got to plug in the timers for the power supplies, got to put up the blow up Santa and Frosty and set up the spots for the “Listen To Our Lights” signs.  I have other static things to get out, but since *I* am cooking tomorrow I doubt that I will get that done until this weekend, which is still cool.

When I was out in the yard working on positioning the web cam a neighbor of mine came up and introduced himself, Elliott, and we got to talking and the next thing you know we were hooking up the web cam in the corner of his yard.  Its at an angle that needs me to be able to adjust it a bit and you can tell its from a distance, but it gives a better view of everything, although smaller, than if it was in my yard.  The perfect position for it would be in the neighbors directly across the street, but as I have said before, I dont know them, so I dont really want to ask them… if we get to talking, I will, for sure.

Gotta get some ZZZZ’s now so I can get up and get the Turkey in the oven.  HAPPY THANKSGIVING to all and be sure to check out the web cams tomorrow night!! 🙂

Did A Light Test Tonight…

Author: Ken | Filed under: Lights, Projects Sunday Nov 23,2008

Been working hard to get it all ready to go by Thanksgiving Night.  I had planned to get it all up and ready by November 2oth, that didn’t happen.  As long as we are ready by Thursday night, I’m ok with that.

So, today I got 5 more controllers plugged in to everything and power supplied to them.  I have 1 more controller to get plugged in, that should be done today.

Once it got dark enough we did a light test, which was carried live on our # 1 web cam.  Things are looking good.  Got a few more things to add/change before we will be at 100%, but it looking good.

Below is a pic taken by my cell phone…

Call me a light tease ;)

Author: Ken | Filed under: Lights Tuesday Nov 18,2008

Here is a pic I took just a few moments ago of a couple of our homemade ropelight snowflakes and our homemade Bethlehem Star…

We have “snow” on our roof….

Author: Ken | Filed under: Lights, Projects Friday Nov 14,2008

It might not be the kind that fell from the sky, but we have snow flakes on our roof. We got them up there earlier tonight. One of my elves, Bob, went above (litterally) and beyond this afternoon. We had to finish making the stands for all 11 flakes and then get all of this, including 11 25+pound sand bags, up on the roof. What took the longest was getting the flakes in place where we wanted them, with decent spacing. Once we were done, had it all plugged in, we learned something big… WE NEED MORE SNOW FLAKES! 11 look really cool… but another 20 or so would look Wicked Awesome! Below is a small clip from my cell phone.

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